Asia & the Pacific

30 Items

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

What Would a Realist World Have Looked Like?

| January 8, 2016

"Realists believe nationalism and other local identities are powerful and enduring; states are mostly selfish; altruism is rare; trust is hard to come by; and norms and institutions have a limited impact on what powerful states do. In short, realists have a generally pessimistic view of international affairs and are wary of efforts to remake the world according to some ideological blueprint, no matter how appealing it might be in the abstract."

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

The Islamic State of Afghanistan

| December 22, 2015

"A negotiated solution would require a military stalemate on the ground, and this depends on NATO forces guaranteeing that Afghan forces in key positions will not be overrun. This is the political objective that should inform Western military support in Afghanistan from here on out: to make clear to the Taliban that they can achieve more through a peace deal than through fighting and to make clear to Western electorates that this isn't a forever war."

Company A, 1st Battalion, 77th Armor Regiment, part of Task Force 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment (TF 1-18 IN) board aircraft in Kuwait on 19 OCT 2006 in order to move to Baghdad, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

CC-BY-SA-3.0

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

What Do Politicians Really Mean by 'Global Leadership?'

| September 4, 2015

"...[W]hat I'd really like to know is what the different candidates think about this issue, and hear them explain why U.S. taxpayers should pay a lot more than our allies’ citizens do and how Americans actually benefit from the energetic foreign policy that both GOP and Democratic stalwarts never even question. I'd also like to see reporters give them a good grilling on this topic, and refuse to accept vague or non-specific responses."

Analysis & Opinions - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Why Nuclear Dominoes Won't Fall in the Middle East

| April 22, 2015

"On their own, civilian nuclear programs do not necessarily imply a military threat. Under the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), member countries are allowed to pursue civilian nuclear programs. Because of a growing energy demand, many countries in the Middle East are exploring nuclear power as part of their energy mix. While some, including the United Arab Emirates, have succeeded in starting civilian nuclear power programs, others face serious financing and technical capacity issues."

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

The Top 5 Foreign Policy Lessons of the Past 20 Years

| November 18, 2014

"China's increasingly assertive policies toward its immediate neighborhood shows that Beijing is hardly indifferent to geopolitics, and Russia's assertive defense of what it sees as vital interests in its 'near abroad' (e.g., Ukraine) suggests that somebody in Moscow didn't get the memo about the benign effects of globalization. And regional powers like India, Turkey, and Japan are taking traditional geopolitical concerns more seriously these days. Bottom line: If you thought great-power rivalry was a thing of the past, think again."

Supreme Allied Commander Europe Admiral James G. Stavridis, General David H. Petraeus (new Commander of ISAF) and NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen during a news conference at NATO Headquarters, July 1, 2010.

DoD Photo

Policy Brief - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

NATO in Afghanistan: Turning Retreat into Victory

| December 2013

NATO after Afghanistan is an organization that suffers from a certain fatigue pertaining to future stabilization challenges. NATO will not automatically cease to conduct operations after 2014, but the level of ambition will be lower. The Afghanistan experience and the failures of the light footprint approach calls for a thinking that is less liberalist "in the abstract" and more focused on provision of basic services (security, development, and governance).

Discussion Paper - International Security Program, Belfer Center

NATO in Afghanistan: Democratization Warfare, National Narratives, and Budgetary Austerity

| December 2013

This paper explains changes in NATO's nationbuilding strategy for Afghanistan over time as an internal push-and-pull struggle between the major NATO contributors. It distinguishes between he "light footprint" phase, which had numerous problems connected to limited resources and growing insurgency (2003–2008), NATO's adoption of a comprehensive approach (CSPMP) and counterinsurgency (COIN) strategy (2009–2011), the transition and drawdown (2011–2014), and the Enduring Partnership (beyond 2014). The paper explains NATO's drawdown, stressing both increased budgetary strictures compelling decisionmakers to focus on domestic concerns nd predominant national narratives connected to a protracted stabilization effort in Afghanistan.

Magazine Article - The European

'Iran is the Main Beneficiary of the Iraq War'

| March 20, 2013

"Iran has always been a major power in that region. Under Saddam however, Iran and Iraq were bitter enemies who fought a long war and were strongly opposed to one another. There was almost a rough balance of power between the two countries. By reducing Iraq's power and by allowing the Shia to become the dominant political force in Iraq, the US removed the main country balancing Iran, and helped bring to power a government that has at least some sympathies and links to Iran. So, Iran is by far the main strategic beneficiary of the Iraq War, which made it even more difficult for the US and its allies to deal with the country."

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

Talking Our Way Out Of Afghanistan

| October 9, 2012

"Because the strength of any dialogue depends on buy-in from each of the major parties to the conflict, the participation of Pakistan, the Taliban's longtime host and supporter, is essential. But the nature and scope of Pakistan's involvement requires consideration. Many would argue it should be limited to regional and security issues. But to exclude Pakistan completely would be to encourage it to act as a spoiler."